Everyone references the real estate bubble of 2008, but most people couldn’t effectively explain what had happened until the movie The Big Short came out.
The film brought to light some of the glaring issues that caused America’s housing market to collapse. Since then, the mortgage business has gone through slews of changes, with every party involved needing to find new ways to navigate the changing landscape.
For Albert “The Mortgage Guy” Preciado, 2008 was just a bump in the road along a much longer journey. Since then, Preciado has done more than $1 billion in residential loans, building a business around transparency and ease in a largely outdated industry.
“Most mortgage companies have been doing the same things for years, including before the 2008 meltdown,” said Preciado. “The process for getting a mortgage is boring, or worse, stressful—yet, a mortgage is part of The American Dream. It should be an exciting process, not a stressful one.”
He went on to explain that his primary goal when first starting , a company that has since closed over 2,400 deals since 2005, was to make the lending process fun and easy. Preciado didn’t want to approach the industry the same way everyone else did.
“Even when I was thinking of what to name the company,” he said, “people told me I should pick a more professional-sounding name. But that’s not what I wanted. I wanted the name to reflect the culture. When a client comes in, we make sure they know exactly why we recommend the things we do, in detail, A to Z. When they leave our office after a 45 minute consultation, they walk away with a full understanding of what the loan process looks like, and what their expectations should be.”
When I asked Preciado how he has been able to build a successful company with 30+ employees, he said, “Everything we do has a system. Everyone knows their roles, and what their measures for success are.”
Preciado also shared that the level of transparency his team brings to the table isn’t what most other mortgage companies do—especially when it comes to marketing. The bulk of the business they generate for themselves come from Preciado’s massive social following, Instagram posts, direct messages, and speaking events. Preciado has positioned himself as a motivational speaker and entrepreneurial figure as much as he has a mortgage expert—and the investment has paid off significantly for him and his company.
“Most mortgage companies don’t do digital marketing,” he said. “Not very well, at least. Whereas for me, I’ve always been eager to try new things, and not be afraid to do what everyone else isn’t. That’s a big reason I bought a red Ferrari and started branding myself that way. I’ve always loved cars, but this was a way for me to stand out—and it might sound funny, but it has worked. A lot of people see me as ‘the cool mortgage guy,’ which in turn leads to more business.”
Preciado’s unique approach is clearly working. He shared that the company is currently expanding nationwide, and has been hiring like crazy.
“We have a system in place where any person new to the business could go from making $100,000 per year, which is what most currently make working at a bank handling mortgages, to making a million dollars a year with us. We already have three success stories of guys that went from making under a hundred thousand to making a million—in their first twelve months,” said Preciado.